The heart of Orange County’s Irvine is about to get a splash of color and a dose of inspiration with the forthcoming exhibition "Paul Gardner: A Retrospective," set to take the local art scene by storm starting December 11. This tribute to the late, influential artist Paul Gardner, known for his stirring abstracts, will be on full display at the city’s own City Hall, as per an announcement made by the City of Irvine.
For those unacquainted with his powerful brushwork, Gardner spent over twenty solid years as a painting instructor at the Irvine Fine Arts Center. His unique gift lay in an extraordinary ability to transform everyday phenomena, be it the serene dance of water or the pulsing reverberations of music, into visceral pieces of art that provoke and captivate. An opening reception is earmarked for January 11 between the hours of 4 and 6 p.m., promising attendees an up-close and personal encounter with Gardner’s legacy.
“Paul Gardner: A Retrospective” isn’t just an art exhibition; it’s an immersive dive into the mind of a maestro who blended intuition and improvisation to make each canvas an imaginative odyssey. In the words of the City of Irvine, the exhibition showcases “the deep connection Gardner had with his surroundings,” inviting audiences to quite literally paint themselves into Gardner’s worldview. It's an affair not to be missed by local art aficionados and cultural novices alike.
Art at City Hall, the ongoing art series bringing this exhibit to life, is a testament to the city’s commitment to cultural enrichment, boasting a lineup of artists from all walks of life and media types. For the pencil pushers and the 9-to-5 crowd, you’re in luck: City Hall is open during prime business hours Monday through Thursday from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. and Friday's until 5 p.m., making it easier than ever to swap your coffee break for a culture fix. And with no cost for admission, it’s a price even struggling scribes can afford.
Irvine, the master-planned darling of SoCal, has more to it than just being a hub for higher education and a beacon of safety and diversity; it’s also steadily transforming into a little slice of art-world heaven. For more information on how to drink in the artistry, check out cityofirvine.org/artatcityhall.